Bring Back the Fish

Bringing fish life back to Noosa: restoring a lost habitat in the Noosa Biosphere Reserve

Project purpose

The Noosa River and Lakes system and Laguna Bay were once teeming with marine life. Recreational fishing flourished, as did commercial fishing. This is no longer the case. This project aims to achieve the progressive re-establishment and restoration of resilient aquatic ecosystems in the Noosa Estuary, River and Lakes system. It consists of three elements:

  • Re-establishing oyster reefs and associated aquatic communities in the Noosa Estuary and River up to Tewantin;
  • Restoring prawn stocks in the Noosa River and Lakes; and
  • Improving land use practices in the Kin Kin catchment to reduce sediment runoff into the River and Lakes system.

The long term outcome sought is a considered balance between marine biodiversity recovery and sustainable recreational and commercial fishing.

Proponent: Noosa Parks Association Inc. and The Thomas Foundation

Photo credit: The University of Sunshine Coast


  • Restore the marine biodiversity of the Noosa River and Lakes system and Laguna Bay by restoring fish populations to levels that better reflect past abundance;
  • Move towards the realisation of local recreational fishing and commercial fishing practices that are sustainable.


This project is due for completion through to 2018.

Project value

USC Component

  • Cash & in-kind contributions: $746,500
  • Funding from NBR Foundation: $283,500
  • USC project value: $1,030,000

UQ Component

  • Cash & in-kind contributions: $287,000
  • Funding from NBR Foundation: $157,800
  • UQ project value: $444,800


13 January, 2018 - Artificial oyster reefs bringing Queensland waterways back to life
14 January, 2018 -ABC Sunshine Coast
5 December, 2017 - Fish Fightback: 14 New Reefs for Noosa
5 December, 2017 - Restoring river oysters for better fish life
4 December, 2017 -Bold reef project to get the fish biting in Noosa
1 December, 2017 -7 News Sunshine Coast
1 December, 2017 - 9 News Sunshine Coast

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